History of the Oakland Township Fire Department

  • October 2017  Lou Danek is hired as full-time Maintenance Technician and Assistant Fire Chief.  His duties include maintaining all Oakland Township buildings, but also performing the role of Assistant Fire Chief.  This position also allows for Station 2 to have an extra person available to respond to calls most of the time during business hours.

  • Spring 2017  OTFD hosts a state-sponsored Firefighter I & II class for all of North Oakland County.  The class covers all aspects of firefighting and includes live fire training in conjunction with Oakland Community College.

  • Spring 2017  In cooperation with Rochester Hills FD and the OPC, OTFD initiates a Senior Citizen Safety Program that educates senior citizens on potential hazards in their home.  The program includes home visits and assistance with things such as changing smoke detector batteries.

  • Fall 2016  OTFD hosts EMT-Basic Academy for all of North Oakland County.  The academy trains new recruits to obtain a medical license and to be utilized for medical emergencies at their respective departments.

  • June 2016  OTFD purchases 2 new potentially life-saving pieces of equipment.  The first piece of equipment, the LUCAS II, is a battery operated device that provides continuous chest compressions for a person in cardiac arrest.  Once placed on the patient, it can run for 45 minutes and frees up a responder from having to perform chest compressions – allowing them to execute other patient care tasks simultaneously.  The second piece of equipment, the King Vision, is a camera laryngoscope that allows easier intubation (breathing tube placement) for a patient in respiratory arrest.  The camera laryngoscope greatly improves visibility and success rates of intubation.

  • Spring 2016  In an effort to educate the community and improve cardiac arrest survival, Paul Elder of OTFD initiates CPR classes every month that are open to the public.

  • Winter 2016  Shift Officers are implemented for all 3 of the duty shifts.  The Shift Officer programs ensures that there is a supervisor available 24/7 that is able to make decisions and manage any issues that may arise.

  • Winter 2015  All full-time staff and Officers complete nationally recognized “Blue Card” command training.  The training is a standardized program that has gained wide acceptance locally, and it ensures all supervisors run fire scenes in a similar fashion.

  • January 2015  After a testing and interview process, OTFD promotes 2 full time personnel to Officer positions.  Derek Young and David Ludington are promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, and other Officers moved up the ranks as a result.  This marked the first time that full-time personnel were eligible for Officer positions.

  • Summer 2014  OTFD receives a FEMA Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) in excess of $120,000 for replacement of all the department’s Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) that are used for firefighting.  The SCBAs increased the breathing air time from 22 minutes to 45 minutes and include safety features such as buddy-breathing for emergency situations.  The SCBAs are also outfitted with Pak-Tracker technology to assist in locating injured/trapped firefighters.

  • Spring 2014  After a generous donation from the Moceri family, OTFD goes “paperless” for all EMS run reports by receiving tablet PCs.  The tablet PCs, coupled with an electronic patient care record program make for easier recordkeeping and billing for ambulance runs.

  • Summer 2013  Identifying the need to improve response, Chief Strelchuk implements a minimum of 2 Firefighter/Paramedics per shift (1 at each station).  Traditionally, when a full-time person took a vacation or was sick, the station would become unmanned – requiring paid-on-call staff to respond to the station and pick up an ambulance.  This old process increased response time, and did not guarantee that the other ambulance would even respond to calls.

  • August 2013  Oakland Township FD receives 3rd wheeled coach ambulance. Due to increasing calls and the Fire Department now working with the Sheriff's Department for psychiatric committals, the department will now operate 2 Advanced Life Support ambulances and 1 Basic Life Support ambulance.

  • May 2013  After nearly 18 years as Fire Chief, Bill Benoit retires and Paul Strelchuk is hired as the next Fire Chief.
  • November 2004  As approved by the Board of Trustees the Fire Department begins providing Advanced Life Support transport services with 24 hour a day 7 day a week coverage. A total of 6 full time Fire Fighter/Paramedics are appointed.
  • January 2004  Due to extended response times from private ambulance providers, the Board of Trustees approves a plan to upgrade to Advanced Life Support and provide two full time fire fighter/paramedic coverage 24 hours a day 7 days a week starting in November of 2004.
  • September 2003  The Oakland Township Fire Department takes delivery of a second Wheeled Coach Ambulance to be located at Station Two.
  • September 2002  The Fire Department receives approval from the Oakland County Medical Control Committee to upgrade medical licensure to a Basic EMT transporting agency.
  • June 2002  Station two is opened and delivery of new apparatus is accepted.
  • April 2001  Board of Trustees awards a contract to Marion Body Works to deliver three new engines and one new tanker.
  • March 2001  Construction begins on station #2.
  • January 2001  Bids are received and a contract awarded to Bedzyk Bros. Inc. to construct new fire station on Rochester Road.
  • December 2000  The Oakland Township Fire Department celebrates its 5 year anniversary by presenting certificates of appreciation to 16 members of the department for their 5 years of service.
  • April 2000 The Oakland Township Fire Department purchases 8 acres on Rochester Road just north of Stoney Creek Road as a location for a second fire station.
  • September 1999  The Fire Department takes delivery of a new 1999 Marion rescue vehicle.
  • January 1998  Oakland Township cancels contract with the City of Rochester and starts responding to all fire and medical emergencies in Oakland Township.
  • October 1997  The Fire Department takes delivery of its first new fire engine, a 1997 Marion pumper/tanker.
  • December 1995  The Oakland Township Fire Department starts responding to fire and medical emergencies in the eastern portion of the township. The City of Rochester Fire Department covers the western portion.
  • September 1995  The Board of Trustees votes to purchase a second pre-owned fire truck.
  • July 1995  Construction begins on Fire Station #1.
  • April 1995  Bill Benoit is appointed as the first chief of the newly formed fire department.
  • March 1995  The Board of Trustees approves plans to build a fire station behind the current township hall and purchase a refurbished fire truck.
  • February 1995  The Board of Trustees votes to start the fire Department, and authorizes the funds for training and equipment.
  • January 1995  A proposal is made to the Board of Trustees by then Building Director Bill Benoit, outlining cost and time frame for starting the Fire Department.
  • November 1994  The Board of Trustees is advised by Orion Township that they are no longer interested in providing fire protection services to Oakland Township. Board considers starting their own fire department.